Read My Story

Read My Story

My name is William Lynch. My story begins nearly 4 decades ago in May of 1975. While at a church-sanctioned camping trip in northern California, I was raped, sodomized and strangled by Rev. Jerold Lindner, a Catholic priest. I was seven years old. I remember blacking out during the rape and regaining consciousness with semen in my mouth and the priest on top of me, his hands around my throat. As he strangled me, he spoke these unconscionable words: “You are no longer a child of God.” In that moment, I felt I ceased to exist. Later in the weekend, Lindner would rape and torture me and my 4-year old brother forcing unthinkable acts among and between us. Watch an exclusive interview of my...

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Support the Ballot Initiatives

Support the Ballot Initiatives

THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE. Many states allow ballot measures as part of a dynamic democratic system. It gives advocates the ability to advance their mission, bypass the legislative process and take the vote directly to the electorate on a single political issue. RISE will be supporting ballot initiatives to repeal both the criminal and civil statutes of limitation (SOLs) for child sexual abuse in all 50 states to protect our children once and for all. This course of action is absolutely viable as multiple states have already done so successfully. We will begin in California in 2016. THE PROCESS. There are four phases to bringing a ballot initiative and it usually costs several million dollars. Phase 1 requires focus groups and statewide survey to validate the viability for fundraising. Phase 2 requires legally drafting the measure and getting it approved. Phase 3 requires gathering 500,000+ valid registered voter signatures. Phase 4 requires getting the general public to vote to repeal the SOLs. JOIN US. Your support is greatly needed and appreciated. First and foremost, being fully funded by June 2015 is essential to achieving passage in California. Next, generating a statewide grassroots awareness campaign is imperative. And last, but not least, inspiring the general public to vote resoundingly is going to take a huge concerted effort! One that we cannot do alone. BY LAW. RISE is a 501(c)3. Any donations provided through this website are tax deductible and will be used to fund  expenses necessary to lay the groundwork for upcoming ballot initiatives. Beginning in 2015, donations specifically for funding the 2016 California ballot initiative will be accepted by an independent 501(c)4. To receive timely notifications as to when those contributions can be submitted, sign up for our newsletter. Read...

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Amanda Beam

Amanda Beam

The following column, written by journalist and fellow Survivor Amanda Beam, was featured on July 17, 2012 in the online edition of the News & Tribune from Jeffersonville, Indiana and is reprinted with the author’s permission. Amanda’s column can be found every Tuesday at www.newsandtribune.com. I’ve always said everyone has a story. Most often, you just have to ask the right questions to discover it. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to tell the tale on your own accord without those inquiries being solicited. In the news recently, two stories have come to light that certain cowards wanted to keep hidden in the shadows. People decided to ask questions too late. One is the Penn State scandal involving former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky. The other is about a California man named William Lynch. On May 10, 2010, Lynch walked into a Los Gatos retirement home and allegedly beat 65-year-old retired Catholic priest Jerold Lindner. But Lindner wasn’t any ordinary priest. Through the years, more than a dozen people, including members of his own family, have accused Lindner of child molestation. Thirty-seven years ago, Lynch maintains he and his brother were victimized. According to the now 44-year-old Lynch, the priest violently sodomized he and his brother at a church summer camp. He also claims Lindner forced the boys to perform explicit sexual acts on one another. They were 7 and 4 years old. By the time Lynch confessed the purported atrocities to law enforcement more than two decades later, the statute of limitations had expired. Lindner remained free and never would serve any jail time. Lynch’s story is unfortunately not unique. A 2009 Clinical Psychology Review study estimated 19.7 percent of females and 7.9 percent males worldwide have suffered from child sexual abuse. Many researchers believe the prevalence is actually much higher. Due to the social stigma, fear and shame of the abuse, a high proportion of children and adults never report the crimes. Whether if anyone ever questioned these relationships, or if the children’s pleas and assertions were ignored, we’ll never know. Many of the stories remain untold. But somehow, even in silence, the poison bubbles to the surface and permeates the lives of the survivors. You feel hate. You feel despair. And, at times, you want to destroy the person who made you feel so worthless and ashamed. Lynch felt that anger and acted on it. I never got the chance. More than a decade ago, the man who molested me for four years as a child died. It began when I was a preschooler and continued until I believe third grade. I say believe because I really don’t know. I can remember at least 30 different times. It...

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